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Into it: John Lithgow

Actor John Lithgow, what are you ...

... Reading?

I just read Philip Roth's book, Everyman. It's about a man my age whose body is deteriorating. Roth is such a fantastic writer; he breathes so much life into that story, I just thought it was wonderful. I read John Banville's The Sea. It won the Booker Prize. It's about a middle-aged man who returns to Ireland having just lost his wife. It's a memory piece. He tells the story of himself as a young man and as a middle-aged man, simultaneously. And bit by bit you realize that things happened to him as a young man that deeply affected him as an old man.

... Watching?

My daughter gave my wife the entire first season of 24, and we spent the entire summer watching one episode a night. It's just enthralling; I just had the best time. It's one of those guilty pleasures – not so guilty, I think it's very classy, so I'm very into that. I just spent the weekend watching all I could of the PGA Championship, watching Tiger pulling away from the pack. The only movie I've seen in the past five months is World Trade Center. I just loved it a lot, that it focused completely on the lives of four or five people. It's a wonderfully nonacted film. The actors played it so simply.

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... Listening to?

I listen to classical music almost exclusively – I'm a Beethoven, Mozart, and Schubert fan. But I also love great jazz vocalists and blues singers. I love Billie Holliday and Sarah Vaughn. Modern singers who I think are wonderful are Madeleine Peyroux and Maude Maggert. The two of those, I mention them because they're both guests on my new record album. My guilty confession is, these days the only thing I'm listening to is that record album over and over again. It's my version of vanity. I'm crazy about it. I think it turned out just great. It's called The Sunny Side of the Street.

John Lithgow's new album, 'The Sunny Side of the Street,' comes out Aug. 29. His new show, 'Twenty Good Years,' debuts on Wednesday, Oct. 4 at 8 p.m. EDT on NBC.


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